Communication access rights

When accessing a service, people who have disabilities that affect their communication have the right to accommodations and supports for effective two-way communication. This may include specific practices, communication tools, and/or human support in order to:

  • Understand oral and written information.
  • Have the person with whom they are communicating, accurately understand their messages.
  • Have the time they need to communicate effectively.
  • Use the communication method(s) of their choice and that work best for them.
  • Connect with an organization using the telephone or alternatives to a telephone, if required.
  • Effectively communicate at meetings, conferences, online events and public consultations.
  • Read and/or understand the organization’s written materials.
  • Access an organization’s website and social media.
  • Complete an organization’s forms, take notes and sign documents.

In critical situations, people who have communication disabilities have a right to expect an organization to:

  • Have specific communication access procedures, policies, safeguards and communication supports to ensure they have effective communication to give and receive information, and provide informed consent and / or make decisions in critical contexts such as healthcare and legal situations.
  • Procedures to appoint a trusted communication assistant and/ or a person to support them in decision-making situations.
  • Engage a qualified Communication Intermediary to assist with communication in police, legal and justice situations.